Home > Shopping for an Heir (Shopping for a Billionaire #10)(2)

Shopping for an Heir (Shopping for a Billionaire #10)(2)
Author: Julia Kent

“Then we need more sculpting clay.”

“Want me to check the inventory?” she begged, eager for responsibility.

He grinned. “Of course. Couldn’t pull this off without your help.” The dazzling smile she returned cut quickly as she pivoted and sprinted down the hall to the supply room.

Thirty students. He hadn’t taught thirty students all year, across four different sessions, for this Nude Sculpting class. What was going on?

Puzzled, he walked back into the room, a short line forming before him as people registered, by turns nervous and calm, some in pairs with a buddy, most of them seeming to know old Agnes and Corrine up there in front.

He narrowed his eyes and strode with purpose to the two of them, catching the end of a fevered conversation between Agnes and a fifty-something brunette.

“I’ve seen his ass before. Touched it, even,” Agnes insisted.

“Class was supposed to start two minutes ago, and no Declan McCormick, Agnes. If I gave up my Tuesday night Wine and Whine Book Club because of you and there’s no cute butt guy, you’re toast.”

“What are you going to threaten me with, Pauline? I’m ninety-three. Nothing scares me.”

Corrine whispered, “Your son-in-law. Nursing home.” She rolled her eyes. “And you’re ninety-two, Agnes. For God’s sake, can’t you keep track?”

Agnes turned the color of a sheet.

“I’m not sure which one pisses me off more. My son-in-law or realizing I’ve been telling the world I’m a year older than I really am.”

Corrine just shook her head and began making what looked like a penis out of the lump of modeling clay in front of her.

“Declan’s coming. Don’t worry,” Agnes insisted, standing her ground, eyeing Corrine’s sculpture with interest.

Gerald sighed, crossing his arms over his chest, clipboard bouncing in one hand as he tapped it against his biceps.

“You’re quite the maven, aren’t you, Agnes?”


“Someone who spreads the word. Information broker.”

“Been called worse,” she cackled.

“You told all these women to come because of Declan McCormick’s naked body?”

“Yes.” She stared at him like the female version of Clint Eastwood in a Dirty Harry movie. Gerald stared back. A grudging respect began to grow in him. She was hard core.

“The Westside Center for the Arts thanks you,” he replied, not breaking steely eye contact. “We’ve been trying to grow our classes.”

“Get some hot nude models, then.”

“That’s not the purpose of these classes, ma’am.”

“Purpose, schmurpose. You want more people like me, with disposable income and nothing more exciting at home than reruns of To Catch a Predator and videos on how to make gluten-free cauliflower pizza crusts on cable television to come to these classes, you spice them up.”

“This is nude-model sculpting, designed to teach basic artistic anatomy. We’re not here to titillate.”

She reached into her purse and pulled out a flask. “Call it what you want, Gerald the Accountant. This is like the bachelorette party I never had.”

And with that, Agnes sucked down a shot of whatever was in that flask.

Corrine reached for it. “Give me a nip.”


“I said, give me a nip.”

Agnes’ mouth twisted with a grin. “What?” She pointed to her ear and said, “Two can play that game, Corrine.” She guzzled the rest of whatever liquid joy was in there.

It was going to be a glacial eight weeks.

Stacy jogged into the classroom, carrying a massive tub of modeling clay, face flushed, the hair around her scalp damp with sweat. “Here you go.”

“Hey.” The rumble of a man’s baritone made all the sopranos and altos come to a halt. Gerald looked up.

Declan McCormick was finally here.

“I am late because I don’t have a chauffeur anymore,” he said pointedly, making a face. That was as close to an apology as the class would get out of the man. “Do you know how time-consuming parking in one of those garages can be? They make you walk to a pay station and walk back to your car with the ticket.” He let out an exasperated sigh. “I don’t know how people live like this. What a waste of time.”

The room broke out in spontaneous applause.

Agnes got to her feet and turned around, facing her classmates, arms in the air like Rocky after defeating Apollo Creed. “See? Told you he’d be here.”

Declan’s eyes darted to the old lady, then rolled so high they might as well be cherry pickers. “Oh, God. Are you sure we’re not in Salem? Because I see a witch.”

“I see you’ve met Agnes,” Gerald said, smothering a grin. He reached out to give Declan’s hand a shake, the two pumping arms madly, women in the room sighing loudly.

“We’re intimately acquainted,” Agnes crowed proudly, then hiccuped. The crowd erupted into titters.

Declan pulled him in for a half hug. “Watch the fingers,” he whispered. “She’s more nimble than you think.”

“Is that why enrollment’s triple the norm? Word got out you’re the model?”

Dec shakes his head. “Marie.”

“Your mother-in-law is crazy.”

“Tell me something I don’t know.”

“I know a lot about your family that you don’t know.” Because Declan no longer worked for Anterdec, their relationship had changed. He wasn’t Gerald’s boss anymore. Two months ago, he married Shannon and bought his own chain of coffee shops. Gerald still worked for Declan’s brother, CEO Andrew, and their father, James, who founded Anterdec more than thirty years ago.

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